Zero Hunger city

The London Assembly is calling for more action to help thousands of people going hungry in the capital, including school children.

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Met lags behind in new technologies

Metropolitan Police badge
Metropolitan Police badge Credit: PA

Today's report into the use of technology in the Met compares the force to others across the world. It says not enough has been done to bring innew technologies – like predictive crime mapping, mobile handheld devices andsocial media – to make working practices more efficient and reduce crime.

Smart policing_, by the Assembly’s Budget and Performance Committee argues that, faced with a 20 per cent cut in spending over the next three years, the Met can no longer afford to spend 85% of its ICT budget on maintaining old technology, some of which dates back to the 1970s.

The force has a total of 750 separate systems, 70% are already redundant, rising to 90% by 2015.


New plan to protect future of London's smallest theatres

Some of the capital's lesser known theatres are at risk of closing unless more is done to help them survive, according to a new report from the London Assembly.

Almost half of London's 105 smaller venues feel insecure about their financial future, while more than a third are anxious that their venue might be sold to developers.

The report, named 'Centre Stage, will set out an action plan to help protect small theatres from closure.

Recommendations include appointing a new ambassador for small theatres and allowing venues to advertise on public transport by replacing out of date posters or filling empty spaces.

Assembly to examine homeless scheme

St Mungo's Trust and Thames Reach are helping to reach 831 people sleeping rough on the capital's streets Credit: ITV London

The London Assembly is to examine the capital's first Social Impact Bond - a new way to fund social projects using private investment.

The Mayor, Boris Johnson, introduced one of these bonds in November 2012 to target more than 800 people sleeping rough on London's streets.

The three-year scheme allows charities, social investment companies and individuals to contribute to social projects, and all could make a profit if key targets are met.

The London Assembly's Budget and Performance Committee is to examine those behind the approach, to find out if it's working.

Mayor's air pollution measures examined

Experts will discuss if Boris Johnson is doing enough to improve London's air quality at a meeting of the London Assembly's Environment Committee later this morning.

Guests including the Mayor's Environmental adviser will answer questions from the Committee on Boris' plans to reduce air pollution.

The Mayor's measures include plans to ensure that by 2020 the vast majority of vehicles in the capital's centre during the working day emit low or zero emissions.

He has also suggested plans to introduce an Ultra Low Emissions Zone in central London.


Mayor's Question Time suspended after protests

The London Mayor's Question Time was temporarily suspended after anti-cuts protesters disrupt the conference. The London Fire Brigade Union claimed the protesters were firefighters:


Amazing scenes: Mayor's Question Time suspended as gallery breaks out into chant of "No ifs, not buts, no fire service cuts."


Assembly members leave the chamber as Mayor's Question Time suspended. Massive anger directed towards mayor.


Incredible scenes at City Hall. Mayor's Question Time suspended as angry firefighters stand up and break into prolonged chant against cuts.

Mayor to face questions on emergency service cuts

Mayor of London Boris Johnson
Mayor of London Boris Johnson Credit: Reuters/Luke MacGregor

The Mayor of London is expected to face questions on proposed changes to the fire service when he faces assembly members later.

A consultation on the controversial plans to close 12 fire stations and cut 520 firefighters' jobs in London closed on Monday.

Unions have warned that some of the capital's most historic buildings will be at risk if the cuts go ahead.

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